Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 1 October 2020

Fawad Alam returns to Pakistan Test team after a decade for Sri Lanka series

Left-hand batsman's long wait ends, fast bowler Usman Shinwari also makes the cut

File photo Pakistan's Fawad Alam during a Twenty20 match in Dubai against England in 2010. Pawan Singh / The National
File photo Pakistan's Fawad Alam during a Twenty20 match in Dubai against England in 2010. Pawan Singh / The National

Prolific Pakistan batsman Fawad Alam finally earned a recall to the national team, making it to the Test squad for the upcoming series against Sri Lanka.

Pakistan’s abject performance in the recent Test series against Australia coupled with the general decline in their Test cricket had forced the team management to look at some reinforcements and they went with the experience of Fawad, who has been the most successful batsman in their domestic circuit for years.

The left-hand batsman recently crossed the 12,000-run mark in the first-class game and now boasts an average of more than 56 – the 12th best in the history of the game.

Fawad returns to the Test team for the first time in a decade. He last played five-day cricket for the country in 2009 against New Zealand.

While the 34-year-old was made to wait for his comeback, the one good news is that he is set to feature in the first Test in Pakistan in a decade.

epa08039034 Pakistan players are seen after their loss on day 4 of the second Test Match between Australia and Pakistan at Adelaide Oval in Adelaide, Australia, 02 December 2019. EPA/DAVID MARIUZ NO ARCHIVING, EDITORIAL USE ONLY, IMAGES TO BE USED FOR NEWS REPORTING PURPOSES ONLY, NO COMMERCIAL USE WHATSOEVER, NO USE IN BOOKS WITHOUT PRIOR WRITTEN CONSENT FROM AAP AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND OUT
The Pakistan team lost both Tests against Australia by an innings. EPA

The two-match Sri Lanka Test series is the first to be played in the country since the 2009 attack on the Sri Lankan team bus in Lahore.

Also, left-arm fast bowler Usman Shinwari is likely to get a Test debut after getting selected. Shinwari was in and out of the team in 2019 and should get a chance to cement his place across formats, now that young fast bowlers like Naseem Shah and Musa Khan have failed to inspire confidence and veterans Mohammad Amir and Wahab Riaz have retired from Test cricket.

The series begins with the first Test in Rawalpindi on Wednesday and the second in Karachi on December 19.

Updated: December 7, 2019 03:12 PM

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